How GE Appliances' HR Team Supports Innovation & Putting Customers First

The Next Practices Weekly call series has become a well-attended and wide-ranging discussion for HR leaders each Thursday at 11am ET / 8am PT. On this week's call, i4cp Senior Research Analyst Tom Stone and Membership Director Colleen Hunter facilitated a conversation with special guest Rocki Rockingham, CHRO at GE Appliances. Here are some highlights from the call:

  • GE Appliances is an American home appliance manufacturer based in Louisville, Kentucky. It has been majority owned by Chinese multinational home appliances company Haier since 2016. They have around 16,500 employees, while Haier overall has just over 100,000 employees globally.
  • GE Appliances by the numbers: Each year they build 2,500 units per hour, deliver an appliance every 13.8 seconds, procure 3 billion parts, and manage 16 million calls through their call center.
  • At GE Appliances, a simply philosophy, adapted from their Chinese parent company Haier, guides their ambition as a company. They recognize that their main challenge is to lead change… or allow others to change them. As a result, they have adopted the Chinese Rendanheyi Management Model which has three main components:
    • Entrepreneurial spirit
    • Ecosystem thinking
    • And getting as close to "zero distance" between employees and customers as possible
  • The entrepreneurial spirit is seen in their creation of over a dozen "micro-enterprises" with GE Appliances, such as Clothes Care, Refrigeration, Filtration, Small Appliances, and so on. These are in turn supported by "platforms" such as technology, supply chain, finance, marketing, human resources, and so on.
  • Key behaviors show up in four ways:
    • Hiring - Look for these behaviors in candidate assessments
    • Enabling - Create zero distance with each other; enhance connections; unleash employees potential
    • Developing - Seek feedback; be an active learner; create an environment for growth
    • Recognizing - Encourage behaviors; celebrate key moments
  • HR at GE Appliances has three purpose components:
    • Build a culture where "How" matters. This involves an elevated employee experience; behaviors that unlock potential; and end-to-end collaboration and integration.
    • Drive transformational business results. This involves optimal organizational design and effectiveness; purposeful change and innovation; and a best people, best careers, best company philosophy.
    • Bring HR operational excellence to what we do. This involves accountable, credible, and trusted leaders; bold ideas and value-added contributions; and straight forward and consistent delivery.
  • HR at GE Appliances is using AI, including generative AI, in a safe, sandbox environment. They have teams that are exploring various use cases to eliminate the most mundane tasks in talent acquisition, onboarding, and other talent management areas.

Links to resources shared on the call: